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All posts by Dave

Below are all of Dave's postings, with the most recent are at the bottom of the page.

After reading all these posts, mainly from the north of the country,I get the impression that its a cut throat business up there, much like Bristol southwest was 30 years ago, i really dont know how some of the business are staying afloat.
Im one of the oldest astablished radio and TV business down here in the southwest,We been doing satellite equipment long before sky was even thought of, and we have always been fair on my prices, not the cheapest but all the kit we use is good spec and all works carrys a 2 year parts and labour.
I must have got it right because most of the time im turning work away due to workload, although most my old customers are willing to wait until i can find a slot to book them in.
I myself have seen so many changes within the trade from when I was serving my time as a Radio TV engineer which was all valve VHF 405 lines later moving to UHF 625 lines Which meant you had to have a dual standard TV which you needed for BBC2, Most TV by then were hybride which means valve/ transistor, then of course we moved to colour TV which again needed to be dual standard because BBC2 was the only channel transmitted in colour... Wow i remember the first western in colour was the High chaperal.I remember it well because i had to go on alot of manufacturing courses to be able to repair them. Anyway along time after that we had the VCRs come out,So back on so many course i lost count,Us TV engineers had to really move with the times otherwise you were left on the shelf, Not one but 3 formats, are main sellers were the Grundig SVR system and later the Thorn VHS format,I personaly didnt like the sony betamax system, but saying that if they hadnt been knocked out of the market by big rental companys like radio rentals and granda, then it proberly would have progressed.
After that we had the start of Laser, they were playback only large discs the same size as the standard 78rpm record aprox, 2 formats, Hitachi CED which worked similar to a record player but worked on capacitance emmiting diodes the other was the philips laser, Need i say it was more courses with hitachi, i spent alot of time with different manufactures back then, like most TV engineers had to.
It was in the late seventys early 80s that me and my dad desided there was a good untouched business to be had within the satellite industrie within what we thought would be just the southwest of England, at that time we had opened are second Tv shop out in the country.
I was sent off to Luxor which was based in swindon for 2 months on a training course which was later to become salora then ITT Nokia.
First install i ever did was above are first shop which was a 1.2m prime focus dish with a 4ghz LNC, 220 west for the russian satelite Gorizont.
The following day which was VE day we had some of the main stream media turn up at are shop to see the russians parade live on russian TV, By the way, the actuall satellite receiver was built into there TVs even back then.
Soon after that we were able to offer polsat RAI for the italians, we were installing equipment all over England, it took off quite fast, you must bare in mind the dishes for 10-13-and 16 east+ 220 west were 2M primefocus fiber glass, and just the LNCs were £600 a time, it was all hand made, the satellites them selfs were only kicking out 5Watts hence the big dishes, we also took on some very large projects and for distribution we had most of it made to order, again handmade.
With todays tech far as aerials and satellite providing the person has the right meters and some common sence they can install a system.
Where most installers will come unstuck if there givin say a faulty multiswitcher, or even a bog standard distribution amp to repair apart from checking the fuse in the plug end they would be knackered.
Thats why im afraid i cant call a sky or ex sky person a engineer, the word engineer to me and many other, time served engineers is to loosly used like so many other trades.
They should be called either fitters or installers.
Theres nothing engineering about finding out whats wrong with someones satellite system all you need is the tools, spare receiver,LNB and a reel of cable.
If its the receiver at fault, and your not a engineer then you send it to someone who is a engineer.
Im sorry to harp on but it does get up my goat to think i did a stright 5 years city and guilds apprenticeship, plus umpteen courses with manufactures within the TV trade, then someone can go to colleage for 8 weeks or so, and be labled a engineer.
They will be calling window cleaners engineers soon lol, other countries must be laughing at us.

There must be other time served engineers on here, would love to here your opinions on the matter.
Warm regards

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